Oktoberfest Prost!

Trip Start Sep 15, 2010
Trip End Jul 23, 2011

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Flag of Germany  , Bavaria,
Tuesday, September 28, 2010

I am in love.  It's been ten years since I've been back to the city where I first studied abroad in college and I still love everything about it ... the mountain air, the friendly people and great beer!  For me, Munich also represents the birthplace of my independent traveling spirit.  It was from here that I had my first adventures traveling alone in Europe and gained the confidence to later travel to Africa and Central America.

I was only in town for three days, but the timing couldn't have been better.  This year is the 200th anniversary of Oktoberfest!  Imagine 8,000 people in one tent singing, dancing and prosting from all over the world.  This is truly the party of all parties. 

Unfortunately, this also meant I wasn't sure where I would sleep prior to my arrival.  I couldn't find a room for less than 100 euros and hadn't heard confirmation from my former host family in over three weeks.  The only place I could find a partial reservation for was a hostel called "The Tent."  It is exactly what it sounds like and they only had floor space for two of the three nights I would be in town.  Thankfully upon arrival, I received an email from my host mother saying they were expecting me.  It was wonderful to see Elke and Eberheart again after all these years and we enjoyed breakfast together every morning just like old times.

After settling in, it was time to enjoy the festivities.  It was a little intimidating to show up at Oktoberfest alone, but I knew my dear friend Christian was working there.  It's hard to believe it has been ten years since we have last seen each other.  We met at the local gym he used to work at while he was in law school and I always cherished the hours we spent comparing notes about German and American life.

For the past five years he has taken time off from work to serve tables during Oktoberfest.  I originally offered to pitch-in too, but after one night of trying to manage my own beer stein I think it's just as well that didn't work out.  Christian's beautiful girlfriend, Susie, did let me borrow her dirndl and I had one incredible night making many new friends by the bandstand and up on the balcony.  

With the first two countries behind me, I have survived without a coat and learned never to run up an escalator again (I almost missed my train).  I am looking forward to soaking up the sun and slowing down in Greece. :)
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Kathrin on

Hi Crystal,

Awesome adventures you are having. You look so beautiful in the pictures - like you are taking it all in and having so much fun. Loved the Dirndl picture... Please keep us posted. We are looking forward to seeing you here in Caracas sometime next year.

Lindsay Young on

How wonderful! I am so happy for you. Enjoy your travels and tell me all about them when you are back in the states.

Rehab on

Aren't you having a blast? :D &lt;3

Ron on

Jealous... I am so jealous, you keep having a wonderful time. I definitely miss the fresh bread of Germany. May God continue to bless you on your travels... Chao!

Rob on

What a great adventure!

benmarks on

We just missed you at das Rathaus - we ate breakfast across from it last week. HAVE FUN!

Third Big Day on

Crystal. I love you, and reading your travel blogs. I'm sure your living the life as we speak. Espcially right now. But glad to hear that your having an awesome time.

Cathy Glenn on

You're inspiring all of us to seek the inner traveller within ourselves. Love getting your travel blog updates. You're living your dream!!! Take care and keep making memories!

Athena on

So excited for you!! My prayers are with you for a safe and amazing journey !!
I work with your dad ,by the way :)

Debra Payne on

Hi Crystal!
I miss you! Sounds like a wonderful time.
Keept the positngs, so much fun to read them!
best to you!!! :)

Anna from Oia on

Hi Crystal!!!
So cool to see how your trip is going well!! Did you climb an other hostel wall??ahhaha!! It will be nice also when arive the South America time!!! Beijos!!

gapyearcloealex on

Amazing blog ! So inspiring !

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